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On January 6, on the Feast of the Holy Nativity and Theophany of Our Lord Jesus Christ, a Divine Liturgy was celebrated in the St. Gregory the Illuminator Mother Cathedral of Yerevan by His Holiness Karekin II, Supreme Patriarch and Catholicos of All Armenians.
Under the singing of the hymn “Khorhurd Khorin”, the Pontifical procession led the Armenian Pontiff to the Altar from the Chapel of St. Trdat. Assisting His Holiness during the Divine Liturgy were His Grace Bishop Moushegh Babayan, Grand Sacristan of the Mother See and Chairman of the Monastic Council of the Mother See; and His Grace Bishop Anushavan Jamkochyan, Dean of the Theological Faculty of Yerevan State University and Dean of St. Gregory the Illuminator Cathedral in Yerevan.
During the Pontifical Divine Liturgy, the Catholicos of All Armenians extended His Pontifical Message to All Armenians worldwide, conveying to everyone the Good News “Christ is Born and Revealed”.
THE MESSAGE OF HIS HOLINESS KAREKIN II SUPREME PATRIARCH AND CATHOLICOS OF ALL ARMENIANS ON THE FEAST OF THE HOLY NATIVITY AND THEOPHANY OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST (Yerevan, Saint Gregory the Illuminator Cathedral, January 6, 2022)
In the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit: amen. "Glory to God in the highest, that thou hast come and thou hast saved the universe through Your theophany” (Hymn of the Nativity).
On the feast of the Nativity of our Lord Jesus Christ, with the heavenly tidings "Christ is born and revelead", we bring our love and best wishes to you, gathered in this church, to all our people and together with shepherds and angels, who bowed down before the Son of God, we praise the incarnate Savior saying: "Glory to God in the highest, that thou hast come and thou hast saved the universe through Your theophany”.
With the miraculous mystery of the Nativity of Christ, today once again the hope and grace of salvation descends again upon the world troubled by disasters and calamities. By the bright radiance of the star of Bethlehem, by the grace of the Nativity of infant Jesus, darkness of hopelessness is dispelled from the souls transformed to a Bethlehem. By the theophany of His Only Begotten Son, God invites all mankind to turn their hearts into a shrine of the revelation of divine infinite love, to experience cleansing from sins, to be transformed, and to be saved through a renewal. The apostle exhorts: “You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness” (Ephesians 4: 22-24).
The way of human renewal and salvation is to live by God's commandments, to be freed from the snares of sin, which is the firm guarantee of the continuity of humanity and the assurance of eternal blessings. Our Savior Lord, as a testimony of God's infinite love and care for humankind, affirms that the world can be transformed, the reality of suffering and injustice can be turned into a place of happiness, in accordance to the testimony of prophet Isaiah, . "The rough ground shall become level, the rugged places a plain. And the glory of the Lord will be revealed, and all people will see the salvation of God. ” Isaiah 40: 4-5.
Dear faithful people, These days the angelic news of the Nativity brings comfort and consolation to our hearts, broken and disturbed, restless with uncertainty, grieving the pain of catastrophic war losses; so that we may be strengthened by the Lord's saving graces, transformed by faith, and prevail with hope. With such a spirit and progress, undoubtedly, we will be able to overcome the plagues and hardships, to become stronger as a nation and state, as a homeland and diaspora. Our fathers taught us to be resilient to disasters and troubles, not to allow ourselves to be defeated by worries and needs, or concerns regarding the future of the homeland. Let us be united in our homeland and in our communities all over the world. Our disunity and discord will generate new losses, trampling down our great and minor victories. In the current difficult situation, we need to sober up, reject the paths that draw us away from God, firmly anchor our lives on the national and spiritual values, that have been passed down through the centuries, and guaranteed the survival of our people. We all have a sacred duty toward the memory of our children who received the crown of martyrdom for the homeland, to fight altruistically and uncompromisingly, for the sake of our homeland, for the sake of the free life of Artsakh, for the sake of a stable Armenian statehood and the unbroken preservation of our national identity. Let us always remember that the interest of the homeland is above all, and the free and safe life of our people is a priority. The realization of the vision of a strong and prosperous homeland requires a spirit and mindset of commitment and self-sacrifice, a kind and just conduct, and a way of life based on spiritual, moral values. This mission can be realized by the bright example of the Lord, who, according to His word, did not come to receive a position, a service, an honor, but to serve (Matthew 20:28). Every position and authority in the public, political, or state spheres must serve to the progress of the country, and the general welfare and security; just as in a pious family. When a position ceases to be perceived as a service, it turns into a cause of arbitrariness, of evil and unjust deeds. Meanwhile, it is by our deeds of dedication towards the nation and homeland, by showing care and love and caring for each other that we will have strength and power to overcome hardships and tribulations, and to prosper a country. With the life renewed by the mystery of the Savior's Nativity, we believe we will be able to create a new reality where mutual understanding and solidarity, uprightness and patriotism will prevail: a new reality, where every commitment will be aimed at the realization of the desires and aspirations of our people. With this vision, by the grace of Christ's salvation, dear faithful, let us transform the course of our lives, let us always walk the path of upliftment and loving life.
On this soul-stirring day of the Nativity and Theophany, let us pray together so that God Most High may bless, keep, and preserve our homeland and the whole world. Let us pray for our homeland to become a manger of divine presence and the souls of the sons and daughters of our people be strengthened by faith and optimism. May the Lord, with the help of His most caring Holy Hand, guide us to walk the paths of good works of faith, to always glorify His Holy Name today and always and forever: Amen.
Christ is born and revealed,
Blessed is the Revelation of Christ.
At the conclusion of the Divine Liturgy, the Service of Blessings of Waters was offered, during which His Holiness Karekin II blessed the water with the Holy Chrism and Cross. This year, the Godfather of the Cross was Armenian singer, composer, RA Honored Artist David Amalyan.
At the conclusion of the Service of Blessing of the Waters, the Pontiff of All Armenians again conveyed His Blessings and the Good News of the Angel to the faithful people.